Terpenes! What is a terpene? Terpenes are naturally occurring chemical compounds found in plants and even some animals.

They are responsible for the aromas, flavors, and even colors associated with various types of vegetation. In terms of cannabis, terpenes are what make certain strains smell and taste different from others.

The science on terpenes and the effects they have on humans is in its preliminary stages, but it is hypothesized that the terpene profiles of cannabis plants work in tandem with THC and CBD to alter the state of the high or the feeling you get after consuming cannabis products via ingestion or smoke inhalation. For example this may explain the different effects one would feel after consuming two unique strains containing the same THC content but receiving different experiences from each one.

Terpenes themselves won’t get you high, but some are considered psychoactive because they do affect the brain. Think of the smell of an orange when peeling it, and its appealing smell it releases. This smell makes many folks happy. The same can be said for the smell of lavender and other aromatic herbs. The effects of essential oils are also connected to terpene profiles and indicative of the therapeutic nature terpenes possess. Preliminary research suggests that some terpenes have potential benefits for certain mental health conditions, including anxiety, depression, and bipolar disorder.

Cannabinoids and Terpenes

THC and CBD are just two of over 100 cannabinoids found in cannabis, However in most strains they are the two most abundant and by far the most studied. Both cannabinoids and terpenes can give you a clue about what to expect from a cannabis product, even though they are entirely different compounds. That being said they all appear to interact with each other in what experts call the “entourage effect”. This is the idea that the full spectrum of cannabis, including all the cannabinoids, terpenes, and other compounds found in cannabis work synergistically to produce the sensation and effects of cannabis.